By Alane Palmer, ND, CNC
You are so tired you cannot think straight.
You are so worn out that having fun with the kids seems like a chore.
You are so exhausted you need more cups of coffee to stay awake.
Life has been a bit difficult lately but you have juggled things pretty well, or so you thought.
Your brain does not seem to be as quick or sharp as it used to be.
Life is busy, but you seem to be slowing down.
College has been so exciting but the long hours are starting to get to you.
You love your job, and you are an excellent caregiver but somehow you forgot to take care of YOU!
A relatively new term, “adrenal fatigue” was proposed as a new condition in 1998 by Dr. James L. Wilson, a naturopath, and chiropractor. His assumption was that an over-stimulation of the adrenal glands (or “adrenals”) by chronic stress over time could lead to an inconsistent level of cortisol (the stress hormone), sometimes far more than normal and at other times, far too low.
I hear the adrenal fatigue story almost daily at the clinic. It always seems to start with a story or a description of events from the patients. Some describe a car accident, and then the fatigue started, others describe caring for a loved one that was ill and then the fatigue started, others discuss their many hours of over -exercise each week, and then the fatigue started. Adrenal fatigue can also exist when a person has an illness, at first they may seem all revved up and handing things, but slowly they seem to burn out. Adrenal fatigue does exist, and it is easy to tell by saliva testing. Cortisol should be highest in the morning so you can hop out of bed and start your day. Then at lunchtime, cortisol should drop slightly. By dinner time, cortisol should drop more, and at bedtime, saliva testing should show your cortisol to be its lowest so you can sleep. If saliva testing shows that you have adrenal fatigue , your cortisol may be flat-lined the entire day with no spikes, or it by drop suddenly after lunch and stay deficient.
What is YOUR adrenal saliva curve like?
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Medical disclaimer: Our tests cannot be used to diagnose, treat or cure any disease. All test results are to be used as educational materials and as a guide to help support your overall health and wellness. Always discuss health concerns with your medical doctor.